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Tails and Whatevers!

Look at my fine bushy tail!

Application:

God wants us to be obedient and not go our own way.

Outline:

A two-part story about a little squirrel who had to learn a hard lesson that it is always best to obey your parents!

Text:

Ephesians 6:1-3.

 

Part 1

Watch Out for Wolf!

Freddy lived in huge old oak tree in a forest.  He was a little squirrel and had a beautiful big bushy tail.  This is the story of how he lost it.  He had a mother, but no father, and a brother and sister who he loved very much, and they all lived in a hollow in the oak tree.

Their mother would warn them every day: "Whatever you do, watch out for the wolf!  He is sly and he likes to hide away in dark places!"

He is just like the devil who as a thief and a liar:

"Comes only to steal and kill and destroy" (John 10:10a).

But, Jesus is not like that, He said:

I am the good shepherd.  The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.
The hired hand is not the shepherd who owns the sheep.
So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away (John 10:11-12).

Playing in the Trees:

Well, on with our story.  Every day Freddie would run down the tree to play with his friends in a clearing in the forest.  They would run up and down trees, chase each other, and jump from high branches to land in the soft piles of fallen leaves.  They had a whale of a time!

One day, Freddie was impatient when his mother warned him for the five hundredth time, "Freddie, whatever you do ..."  He interrupted,"Yes, yes, I know!" and before she knew it, Freddie was gone!  His mother found herself talking to the walls, "That boy of mine, one day he is going to get into real trouble!"

Chasing Butterflies:

Freddie's toes were itching to chase butterflies.  So he rushed along a branch and launched himself into the air.  The soft skin around his chest spread out like wings and he sailed down, down, down and landed with a thump on the ground.  Wow!  That was fun!

As it was a lovely sunny day he called for his friends to come out and play.  They all slithered down from their treetop homes and set out to find flowers where the butterflies played.  What a time they had chasing the flittering butterflies, and jumping up to try and catch them.   They then chased each other up and down trees, along branches and around tree trunks.

Scaredy-Custards!

At last they all collapsed on the ground and said, "We're bored!  What shall we do now?"  As they lay there panting, suddenly Freddie had an idea.  "Let's explore!"  The other squirrels shook their heads, "We can't do that," they said, "Our mother told us to stay close.   Maybe that sly wolf is hiding and waiting to catch us!"

"Silly!" cried Freddie, "Who's afraid of the old wolf?  Not Me!   We can run so fast that he will never catch us!"  So they all followed Freddie as he rushed away jumping over rocks and bursting through bushes.  They did not notice that they were going further and further away from home and into a new part of the forest where they had never been before.

"I'm scared!" whispered Freddie's sister.  "I'm not!" shouted Freddie, "The last one through this hollow log is a Scaredy-Custard!"

Good Advice?

It's not good to always listen to our friends is it?  Sometimes they will lead us astray and if we follow them, we could do bad things or go to bad places.  Next time they want you to do something you know is wrong, stop a moment and think, and then do the right thing!

Anyway, Freddie's sister decided that she didn't want to be last, so she ran as fast as she could and arrived at the log first and in she ran ...

Caught by the Wolf!

And guess what?  The wolf was waiting inside!  Quick as a flash he grabbed her by the scruff of her neck and dragged her out of the log.  He wanted to take her back to his den and then kill her and let his cubs feast on her!

Was that the end of Freddie's sister?  Well, you'll have to be here next week to find out!

 

Part 2

Brave Freddie!

The other squirrels were terribly frightened.  "What shall we do?" they asked as they saw Freddie's sister wriggling in the wolf's mouth.   "Nothing!  So they just ran home shouting, "Mummy!  Mummy!"

But not our Freddie, he was very brave although he was also very foolish.  Instead of running home, he ran right up to the wolf and sprang on his back!  The wolf grunted and then shook himself violently, but he couldn't get rid of the thing clinging on his back!

"Now, who's this cheeky pest?" he growled fiercely and leapt in the air.  Freddie's sister dropped out of his mouth and was able to scamper off home as fast as her legs would take her.  "Mother!" she yelled, "Freddie is going to be eaten by that dreadful wolf.  He had me in his mouth and I was nearly a gonna!"  Her mother comforted her and licked the bite marks on her neck.

Poor Freddie!

And Freddie?  He jumped off the wolf's back as soon as he saw that his sister was safe and ran off with the wolf in hot pursuit.  The wolf chased Freddie through the trees and was getting closer and closer.  "It's no use!" exclaimed Freddie in dispair, "He's bigger and faster than I am."

The wolf gained on him and just as he felt its hot breath, Freddie saw a low branch just ahead and leapt for it.  As he jumped he heard a snap and a crunch as the wolf bit his long tail clean off!  Poor Freddie sat shivering on the highest branch until the wolf grew tired of waiting and slunk off into the forest.

The Scalding:

As the sun went down, a very sad and sore Freddie limped home where an anxious mother was waiting for him.  What a scalding he got for not listening to her!  Freddie didn't listen and went where he was not supposed to go.  As a result, he lost his beautiful big bushy tail.  Now he could no longer jump from tree to tree any more.  He only could run up and down the tree trunks to fetch his food.

He had learnt a hard lesson, but was grateful that he was still alive.  Often he would think, "What if I had never gone there!"  But it was too late and every day he would look sadly where his beautiful big bushy tail had been.

Obedient to Parents:

The Bible tells you to be obedient to your parents.  In Ephesians 6:1-3, it says:

"Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.
Honour your father and mother - which is the first commandment with a promise,
that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth."

The Bible also tells us to think about what we do before just doing it, and perhaps getting into great big trouble!  In Philipians 4:8-9, the Apostle Paul instructs us:

"Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right,
whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable -
if anything is excellent or praiseworthy, think about such things.
Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me -
put it into practice and the God of peace will be with you."

Freddie's Lesson:

You know boys and girls, even though Freddie was disobedient, he saved his sister from death and she was very grateful to him.  Jesus loves us just like Freddie's mother loved him and He wants us to go to go to Heaven.

But, Adam sinned and because Adam is our great - great - many greats - grandfather, we find that we also sin so easily as well.  We tell lies, we cheat, we steal, and some boys and girls grow up so wicked that they go to prison.

However, the Bible tells us that while we were still sinners, Jesus died for us (Romans 5:8), so that we do not have to pay the price for our sins by dying and going to Hell.  Jesus died in our place and rose again so that He can be our Saviour, and give us Eternal Life and a place in Heaven.

Jesus' Way:

Jesus wants to come into our lives and change us.  He does not want to chop off our tails or for us to lose our tails by doing something really bad.  He wants to forgive us for the sins and wrong things we have done, and make us clean inside.  He then wants to live in our hearts and change us into a person that pleases God.

I want you to close your eyes now and think about what Jesus has done for you and how He loves you.  If you would like Jesus to make you clean inside and come into your heart, then ask Him to.  But, you need to really mean it!  You cannot pretend with Jesus.

God bless!
 

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